Thursday, 7 June 2012

How Jan Cured Poppy of a Tall Poppy Syndrome

There once lived a boy who was nicknamed as Poppy..
He hated kids' games, and saw no fun in hopping.
He never liked jokes, yet enjoyed for some reason
The process of bullying, mocking and teasing!

He mocked every girl in the neighbouring area,
And laughed at the waitresses at "Cafeteria".
He hated to see other children behave:
"I'll NEVER behave! You won't make me a slave!"

But the story'd be boring if this naughty young boy
Was the only one character. Really, no joy.
You may ask (or may not): "Who's the other one then?"
And we're happy to tell you it's lovable Jan.

Jan's a girl of a wonderful personality!
Though aged five she knows good what is "hospitality"!
And you'll never believe when you hear what we say:
Jan's a close friend of Poppy's from the very ... TODAY.

"Is it possible, really? Oh, Lord! Dare not lie!"
(We expect you to ask in a loud puzzled cry..)
But be patient, my friend, and be not scared to death -
Jan's not laughed at her manners or freshness of breath.

She's not bullied by Poppy, though she's such a charm,
And she always behaves being cheerful but calm.
Here's the story of how Jan met the strange little Poppy
Who was watching with hatred some grasshopper hopping.

"How disgusting it is to be green and big-eyed",
murmured Poppy. His voice made the grasshopper hide.
"How amazing it is to be big-eyed and green",
whispered Jan with excitement, watching the scene.

"Look, it jumps on a poppy!, exclaimed little Jan
"Poppy?", said little Poppy... "I don't understand...
Why was poppy named Poppy, and so named was I?
I have nothing in common with poppies! Oh my!

It's a Tall Poppy Syndrome, they say", on he went, 
"Oh, If only I knew what these silly words meant!"
"Never mind it", said Jan to the boy in a fury,
"It's not radioaktive, nor invented by Curie!

I will cure you from such an unwanted disorder"
So she said, being firm in placing her order
to smile and to laught at those things that are funny.
"Neither people, nor birds". "And what about bunnies?"

"No, no bunnies at all!", said the girl. "That won't do!
You should laugh when it's funny!Or don't simply do!
You should also stop being too picky and nosy.
And remember, oh Poppy, to be nice with Ms Rosy".

"I can do this! Of course! It's no trouble at all!
Will I then be no longer named Poppy, the Tall?
Will they stop criticising me, Jan, if I do
Stop criticising them all at once, too?"

And of course Jan said "yes"
Like when wishing to bless.
And we're likely to hope
Poppy'll turn into Pope
(Not that Pope of old Rome!)
with no Poppy syndrOme.

Written by Alyona Malinka (Wee Teacher)
Inspired by Grinch Stole Christmas

Pictures taken from and Art Gluttony
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Friday, 30 March 2012

Article Rendering Sample: The Right For Personal Space

The article under consideration is headlined "The Right For Personal Space". In the current article the author speaks at length about a burning issue of all times which is a problem of discrimination. It is the descrimination against men, to be precise, that is touched upon by the author who lays stress on the oppression of inviolability as well as indispensibility of a person's private space.

The article opens in a brief description of the way of living in a society of former USSR when people even though were used to being deprived of their rights were still longing to get appartments of their own, so that they could feel safe in a so-called "personal space" of theirs. Afterwards the author moves on to defining the term "personal space" in odrer to provide the readers with the information necessary to get involved in further reading. He difines the term-in-question as a part of a territory that "belongs" to one definite owner and essentially enables one to stay there on one's own with no fear of a suddent intrusion of "aliens". According to the author's point of view, it is not only the chattels to be termed as a private or personal space, but clothes even. To put it in shorter words, one must not trespass on anyone's private zone without asking in advance.

Further on the author reminds his readers of some historic examples of the oppression of people's rights for their intimate areas. He starts with describing different attidute towards some areas of men-women's employment, goes on giving examples of high fences around people's houses, and ends up with the issue of public baths. The author claims that these aspects led to a resolution to create segregated lavatory rooms, single-sex saunas and changing-rooms, which depicted the progress towards equal rights in the USSR.

However, in the next passage the author points out the idea that all those restrictions placed were actually to guard women, rather than men. Holding on to the matter of man's rights, the author cites an example of "lovely" female janitors and maids occuring in men's toilets or baths with men inside! Similar situation can hardly take place in a ladies' WC. To contine the author tells a story of an American woman winning a right to use a gents' WC, whilst there's hardly any man to gain such a right. Being put under arrest is what he is more likely to achieve even if seen near the ladies' refreshroom, since it's against the law in the US. The author gives more examples, such as female teachers entering boys toilets in search of smokers, female doctors examining 18-year-old future soldiers and so on. These examples lay stress on the ideas of  the article.

The author draws conclusion by saying that the only way to advance the case of equal rights for a safe personal space is to teach boys just as well as girls to value their intimacy. So, to sum up the ideas mentioned I personally agree that the issue of men's deprivation of private place without a shadow of doubt is a subject for discussion. Yet, I still see no sence in putting this idea into such a exaggerated manner as the author did. What we all need to remember is that every one and all deserve a right for safety, comfort and ease of existance, no matter if one's a male or a female. My space is my space.
.... ... ...
This rendering was done by me several ears ago, when Iwas a 4th year studend. Now that you have read this article could you share your views on:
- the topic of man's/women's descrimination in terms of personal space
- style of the rendering

I would also like you to take a glimse at the languageof this rendering so that you could
- make a ist of words that one can use to talk about descrimination
- write out the basic clichès for writing a rendering

After having done all the tasks and taking part in the discussion in comments TRY AND WRITE YOR OWN rendering of any article on any subject you're interesed in and POST it in the blog (you can use Engloholics OR create your own blog on or

The post is illustrated with the pictures taken from:
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Monday, 26 March 2012

Who Said Vampires Exist Not? (Blurbs on Stocker's "Dracula")

Death scary charachters and events together with the magnificent plot and brilliant use of English language makes Bram Stocker's "Vampire" (Dracula) a scandallous, yet an enthrolling blockbaster of its time.
~ ~ ~
Forget the overrated hackneyed "boo" stories as well as their clumsy plots to make even an infrequent reader laugh! Get transported into some other most mysterious though true-to-life world of fear !
~ ~ ~
This most mesmerising masterpiece of gothic genre is the first book ever to keep you reading desperately to last page with constant shivers runinning down your spine. Who said vampires did not exist?
~ ~ ~
These were my three short blurbs of a famous book written by an American novellist Bram Stocker.
Which one of the blurbs did you like most?
Which blurb could make you buy a book? Why?
Which of the blurbs would not be as successful and perlocutive as planned? Why?
What is the role of word choice in these blurbs? What other synonims would be apropriate?

If you have read the book, too, what blurb could you offer?

If you haven't read the book yet, you can easily read it online on by clicking on Dracula by Bram Stocker

Best regards,
Wee Teacher keen on Dracula
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Why students do not visit lessons???

Have you ever felt offenсe for acts of other people? I have!
Unfortunatly, I can't do another way. It's just the person I am. This feeling is especially strong, when teacher is very kind to you. If teacher's lesson is useless, then I have no reasons for offence. But then I start thinking about other people who suffer from these actions. And belive me there are such kind of people! There always are.
So what do we have in the end? An enormous number of problems for person who didn't come to class, for people who owed to make the person come (and it is not only one person but about 10 or 15 people if not more). Though, all began with words "I don't want. I'm lazy." Very simple phrase but far too more serious consequences.
Thus, tell me please WHY? Why are people are so selfish? Where is the finish of that? What should we do?
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Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Teach and Reflect

Hello, dear fellow Engloholics.
I'm writing to inform you about a rather exciting piece of news - your crazy wee teacher alyona has created a new blog Teach - taught - taught via (a free educational platform).

What will the blog be about?
The blog is to be dedicated to teaching English as a Foreign Language. If you teach, or used to teach, or only plans on becoming a teacher, then the blog is for you!
These are some of the topics I would like to cover in the blog:

  • Reflecting upon our teaching experience (both successful or a complete failure)
  • Discussing the DOs and DON'Ts in classroom
  • Learning the classroom cliches (e.g. Cliches to Start a Lesson)
  • Sharing tips on how to be a good EFL teacher
  • Speculating about ways to motivate stidents
  • Discovering traditional and state-of-art methods and technologies in teaching, etc.
If you have more ideas on what you personally would like to find on the Blog, we are open to your suggestions and propositions!

Forever yours, 
Wee Teacher and Engloholic
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Wednesday, 7 March 2012

How Green Are You, Consumer?

Before coming to the discussion of how "green"  and environmentally-friendly we consumers are, I'd like you to answer this short and easy-to-complete Green Quiz:

Say Yes or No to the following statements:
1) I seldom turn my computer off.
2) I cover myself with anti-mosquito sprays every time I go camping / fishing/ to the forest.
3) I throw rubbish in plastic bags.
4) I never check if the products I buy are eco-friendly.

If you said "yes" to most of the statements, then you are far from being green. 
Said "no" to all of the above? Well, my congratualations! You seem to be as green as a X-mas tree!
But do not preach your naighbour in case he's greener than you are! Let's just read this first (taken from an article by Bill Ryan)

...traditional consumer values. These include:
· Price­ - Few will pay extra for greener products
· Quality -­ Many think green products will be less
effective than existing brands
· Convenience – only minimal inconvenience will be
tolerated by consumers of green products
· Availability – very few customers will go out of their
way to purchase green products

So, who are Green consumers? Are you one of them? 
Here are severeal more links for you to study so that to get inspired to answer the question.
There is also a very interesting Green Revolution research made. Have a look at the statictics to find out more:
How green are you? 
Why is the issue of Green Consumers been discussed here and there? 
What makes the Green question be a burning issue of today?

Looking forward to your ideas!

Best regards, 
your far from being green Wee Teacher

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Saturday, 25 February 2012

How NOT to Complain?

How I wish I was a better complainer! It's not that I wish to complain more, no. It's all about being confident enough to stand my rights (oh, yes, we DO have consumer protection laws and a good deal of other preservative laws we have no idea about), to complain without filling my speech of displeasure with a good deal of inapropreate "Ums" and "Errs", without losing my temper or forgetting completely how to speak proper language! I realise clearly enough that on learning how to complain properly I will probably make my life more diverse and less stressful.
Picture taken from: http//

Since it may seem obnoxious of me to post real complaint letters aimed at real people here in this blog I have decided to change the names and addresses mentioned in the letter, so that to avoid causing troubles but provide you with some knowledge on how NOT to complain instead.
To tell you the truth, I have never sent any letter of complaint to the company or organisation I was displeased with, yet if I have, it would be a splendid opportunity to bring some positive alterations to my despleased well-being.

Here's my story put into a badly worded complaint letter. Shall we discuss it later on?

A Good-Enough-for-a-Shredder Letter of Complaint

NB: For better quality the letter can be downloaded at
Before you start discussing the letter proposed to you I recommend you get to know the basic tips on writing complaint letters, as in the sample at

To encourage a discussion I proppose you answer these questions:

  • What is the general atmosphere of the letter?
  • Does it describe the problem clearly enough?
  • Are all the advised structural parts of the letter presented in it?
  • How is it possible to be rewritten? What would you change?
  • Is there anything you woud leave as it is?
  • What cliches of polite addressing/complaing could be found? 

the Bad Complainer

P.S. For more reference go to to read well explained tips on complaint letter writing! Good luck!
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